Yorkie Poo Temperament – Meet the Bold & Beautiful

If you are considering adding a hybrid breed to your family, you should know about the lovable Yorkie Poo temperament.

This adorable dog is also called Yorkapoo, Yoodle, Yorkerpoo, or Yorkiedoodle. It’s a cross between a Yorkshire Terrier (nickname Yorkie) and a miniature or toy Poodle.

Poodle mixes are at the forefront of the “hybrid movement”. Hybrids, or crosses, aim to eliminate the health problems associated with deeply inbred purebreds while providing the best of both breeds involved in the cross.

The Yorkie Poo, as any owner will insist, is one of the best examples of what’s right about hybrids.

Yorkie Poo Temperament

As one would expect, the temperament of a Yorkie Poo has features of both the Yorkshire Terrier and the Poodle.

Because this hybrid has only been around for around 10 years, there haven’t been enough generations born yet for the individual puppies to be totally predictable.

Until recently, all Yorkie Poos had a Poodle parent and a Yorkie parent. This means that there may be more variation among individuals than with most breeds. Some will have more of a Poodle temperament; others will have more Yorkie traits.

But the gene pool has been steadily growing, so Yorkie Poos are beginning to be bred with other Yorkie Poos. With a few more generations of selective breeding for “desirable” traits, Yorkie Poo temperament will become more standardized and predictable.

Still, we can get a general idea of likely Yorkie Poo personality and traits based on the temperaments of their parent breeds. It’s likely that your Yorkie Poo’s temperament will be:

1. Intelligent

Both of his parent breeds are very smart. As a result, expect your Yorkie Poo to be highly intelligent and somewhat independent.

2. Loyal

The Yorkie Poo is fiercely loyal and forms strong bonds with his owner. He likes to be right by his owner’s side – preferably in their lap!

3. Confident

Don’t let the Yorkie Poo’s small size fool you. He has healthy self-esteem and can be spunky, bossy, and bold.

4. Gentle

The Yorkie Poo temperament is generally easygoing. They are good with most (older) children.

5. Affectionate

Portrait Yorkie Poo

Most Yorkie Poos love to get the attention involved with cuddling.

But cuddly as they are, it is not a good idea to mix your Yorkie Poo with little children who haven’t yet learned to deal with active, wriggly dogs. Yorkie Poos have been known to nip at young children.

Also, a Yorkie Poo is fairly fragile and can be easily injured with rough handling.

6. Friendly

This is a very friendly breed. The Yorkie Poo is good with strangers, other dogs, and children. But, as above, they should be supervised with very young kids.

7. Lively

The Yorkie Poo has a spunky, fun-loving personality. This is one of the hallmarks of the Yorkie Poo temperament. They are born entertainers.

8. Social

They love to be around people. Just being with you while you converse with your friends satisfies an innate need for attention.

Yorkie Poos don’t like being left alone and can suffer from separation anxiety. They don’t do well in homes where no one is around during the day. They make especially good pets for retired seniors.

9. Energetic

The Yorkie Poo is not as high-strung as the Poodle can be. But he does have a high energy level. This dog likes to be busy!

10. Playful

The Yorkie Poodle dog loves to play games – whether it’s tug-of-war or fetch. So, keep games in mind for when you need an alternative to walks to keep them active and mentally stimulated.

11. Alert

The Yorkie Poo temperament is watchful and alert. These traits make him a great watchdog. He will always let you know when there’s something unusual in his environment. But he’s no guard dog; he enjoys greeting strangers.

12. Vocal

This breed has a tendency to bark at nearly any stimulus. He needs early training to minimize this.

13. Instinctual

The Yorkshire Terrier was bred to catch rats in the clothing mills and mines of late nineteenth-century England. The Poodle also has significant hunting instincts, so your Yorkie Poo may have a strong prey drive.

You may need to train him to leave small animals alone (which could be challenging).

Yorkie Poo History

The hybrid Yorkie Poo has only been around for a little over 10 years. It was developed by crossing the Yorkshire Terrier with the miniature or toy Poodle. Both breeds are well established, so we know quite a lot about their history.

Yorkshire Terrier

miling woman with Yorkshire Terrier

The Yorkshire Terrier originated in Scotland, not in England as the name would imply. Its earliest ancestors were various terriers that job-seeking Scotsmen brought with them to England in the mid-1800s.

No one knows for sure what those original breeds were. It’s believed that they included the Skye Terrier and the Paisley Terrier (which is actually a subtype of the Skye Terrier). Some think the Maltese may also have been involved.

The breed became popular in England and was named for Yorkshire County, where the individual terriers were eventually developed into a single breed – the Yorkshire Terrier.

The Yorkie has an interesting history. Unlike many early pedigreed breeds, it was originally a dog of the “common people.” They were used as ratters in factories and mines.

By the end of the century, that began to change, and the Yorkie became popular with the nobility. It is said to have been a favorite breed of Queen Victoria.

Poodle

Photo of Grey Poodle Portrait | Poodle Temperament

The Poodle is an ancient breed that historians believe originated in Asia. Contrary to what many people think, it was the Germans who refined and named the breed, not the French.

There is no such breed as a French Poodle, but it was in France that the Poodle was standardized. It was so popular there that it was named the national breed of France.

Many people are also surprised to learn that in spite of its “fussy” show haircuts and circus tricks, the Poodle is a very skilled hunter.

The name Poodle means “to splash about” in German. As hunting dogs, their specialty was water retrieving, which also explains their kinky, waterproof coats. 

And about those haircuts! Believe it or not, the unusual-looking haircuts served a functional purpose.

Because they hunted in cold water, their hair was allowed to grow over areas that needed to be kept warm – vital organs and joints. The rest of the coat was shaved to prevent matting.

There are three sizes of Poodles. Each was bred for a different purpose. The standard Poodle was developed to be a water retriever. Miniature Poodles were historically used to sniff out truffles. The toy Poodle has always been considered a companion dog.

The Yorkie Poo is created from a cross with either the miniature or the toy Poodle.

Yorkie Poo Training

The Yorkie Poo temperament lends itself well to training (Check out these Dog Training Videos Here). His intelligence allows him to quickly grasp what’s required and he is likely to revel in the social environment.

However, getting back to his parentage, remember that his Yorkshire Terrier ancestors had evolved into independent hunters, so if your Yorkie Poo displays stubborn independence you know who to blame.

The Poodle, on the other hand, is known for their extreme intelligence – which can be a blessing and a curse.

If a Poodle isn’t trained properly, they’ll end up running the household!

Photo of Yorkie Poo in Harness outdoor in grass | Lively Yorkie Poo Temperament

Avoid Boring Repetitive Tasks

Yorkie Poo obedience training should be started at once. You will need to mix it up to keep them engaged.

Once a Yorkie Poo puppy becomes bored, he’ll stop trying to learn and shut down.

Use Positive Reinforcements

Use treats and lots of praise to coax your Yorkie Poo into thinking training is fun.

High Marks on Agility and Obedience

Because both the Yorkshire Terrier and Poodle are athletic and intelligent, the Yorkie Poo breed can excel in agility and obedience.

Early Socialization

Socializing is a huge training concern for this breed. While they are a friendly breed overall, exposing a Yorkie Poodle to different places, animals, and children will help with their confidence.

If you keep training sessions short, fun, and full of positive reinforcement, training your Yorkie Poo should be a breeze.

Helpful Dog Training Resource:

For help with training your Yorkie Poo dog, you should take a look at The Online Dog Trainer by Doggy Dan. Doggy Dan is an expert Dog Trainer based in New Zealand. His online resource contains Hundreds of Excellent Dog Training Videos that will take you step-by-step through the process of developing a healthy, happy well-behaved dog.

Behavior Problems

Yorkie Poo Barking

A Yorkie Poo can take his watchdog role to extremes. If you live in an apartment, you may find that his incessant barking at the slightest sound outside the front door is more than just a source of embarrassment.

Early socialization and training are essential to prevent the barking from becoming an issue. Go to “Stop Barking”, for a number of tips that will help.

Yorkie Poo Jumping

The Yorkie Poo is a jumper. He is able to jump much higher than one would expect given his small size – some say as high as five feet.

This is often how he greets visitors and new acquaintances, so you will want to train a firm “off” command right from the beginning.

Read this article on how to Stop Dog Jumping to help you get this bad behavior in check.

House Training (Potty Training) Your Yorkie Poo

Photo of Black Yorkie Poo

It’s with housebreaking that you’re most likely to see your Yorkie Poo’s stubborn and independent temperament surface. The Yorkshire Terrier is known for being difficult to housebreak.

The Yorkie Poo is said to be a bit easier to train, but don’t be discouraged if it takes a while for your Yorkie Poo to get it.

Patience, persistence, and predictability are key to house training your Yorkie Poo. Keeping housetraining short and fun is the path to success.

Keep in mind that positive reinforcement works much better than negative reinforcement — that is, be generous with encouragement and praise while avoiding sharp words or, the horror of horrors, physical punishment.

Additional Tips for dealing with Bad Dog Behaviors

You can find additional tips in the article, “Dog Temperament and Bad Dog Behavior.”

Yorkie Poo Appearance: The Physical Characteristics of a Yorkie Poo

Yorkie Poo Size

This is a small breed. A full-grown Yorkie Poo can weigh anywhere from 3 to 14 pounds. Average Yorkie Poo weight would be 7 to 10 pounds. Height averages 7 to 10 inches.

Their adult size can vary quite a bit depending on whether their Poodle parent is a miniature or a toy Poodle.

General Appearance

Photo of Yorkie Poo In Basket

Again, there will be a lot of variation in the appearance of first-generation Yorkie Poos. In general, though, the Yorkie Poo has a head that is fairly large for its body size.

He usually has floppy ears, but some will have large, triangular-shaped ears that may stand up. 

His eyes are black and have an inquisitive expression. Many of them will have a little overbite. The muzzle is short to medium-sized.

Most Yorkie Poos will have short legs, but sometimes the Poodle trait will be stronger and they will have longer, spindly legs. Most of them will have their tails docked.

The Yorkie Poo’s coat will vary. Some will have the Yorkie’s long, soft, silky hair. Some will look more like the Poodle’s coarse, curly hair. They can also have a mixture of the two.

Yorkie Poo Colors

There is also a lot of variety in the color of a Yorkie Poo’s coat.

They can be a combination of two or three of the following colors: black, white, tan, sable, apricot, silver, grey, red, or cream.

Once in a while, a solid white or black Yorkie Poo is born, but they are rare. Most of them will have at least two colors.

Keeping your Yorkie Poo Health: What Health Issues Should I Know About?

Your Yorkie Poo, being a crossbreed, is at a huge advantage over his purebred buddies.

Because of the way most genetic weaknesses are passed on, it is very likely that he will not experience a number of problems that his parents were plagued by. However, Yorkie Poos have been known to be prone to the following:

  • Ear Infections. Your Yorkie Poo is more susceptible to ear infections simply because of structural issues — his ear canals are narrow and he has a lot of hair around his ears. Be sure to regularly examine and clean his ears.
  • Skeletal problems. Yorkie Poos rear hip joints are somewhat susceptible to malformations. Additionally, their rear knee joints, specifically their kneecaps, can suffer from instability.  Your local veterinarian should be in a position to comment on your pet’s specific susceptibility to these. In many cases, malformations can be corrected surgically.

Helpful Dog Health Resource:

Note: if you agree that your health and your dog's health should be a top priority then get a copy of The Ultimate Guide to Dog Health. Your Yorkie Poo friend will love you for it. This guide will help save you money, time and most of all help you keep your dog healthy.

Yorkie Poo Lifespan

The typical life expectancy of a Yorkie Poo ranges from 12 to 15 years.

How Do I Care for My Yorkie Poo Puppy?

Feeding Your Yorkie Poo

When you bring home a Yorkie Poo puppy, he will likely be very active and will need to eat often. At this stage, your puppy should be fed three or four times a day. Follow the instructions on the package for the correct amount to feed.

You should feed your Yorkie Poo a high-quality puppy food. A good-quality food may appear expensive at first glance, but you will be able to feed less because it offers better, more usable nutrition than cheaper foods, with less waste.

When your puppy is about six months old, you should cut back his feedings from three or four times a day to two. Give the same amount of food per day but divide it into only two portions.

When your Yorkie Poo is full-grown (reaches its adult weight), it’s time to switch from puppy food to an adult formula.

Yorkie Poo Exercise Needs

The average Yorkie Poo is a bundle of pent-up energy. He needs both mental stimulation and physical exercise. If he is not satisfied, he could well become destructive and/or resort to incessant barking.

Luckily, because of his size, he can get a lot of that exercise in his normal activities inside the house.

But he will need outdoor exercise, too. Regular walks in the neighborhood will help him dissipate energy while also providing the mental stimulation a typical Yorkie Poo craves.

Due to their small stature, neighborhood walks should be no longer than 20-30 minutes.

Are Yorkie Poos Hypoallergenic?

Yes. Because the Poodle and Yorkie are hypoallergenic dogs, the Yorkie Poo is too. This is because their coats are more like human hair and less like fur. They shed very little.

However, hypoallergenic does not mean nonallergenic. It means that the dog is less likely to cause allergies in most people. Mild and moderate allergy sufferers often find that they can tolerate a hypoallergenic dog. But there will always be some people with severe allergies who can’t.

Yorkie Poo Grooming and Maintenance

Because your Yorkie Poo likes human contact, he will adore his daily brushing. His distinctive “out-of-control” fur will need regular brushing and trimming, especially in the head region.

Nail trimming can be a challenge unless you introduce him to it as a pup.

Yorkies are prone to dental problems, so it would be wise to commence regular tooth brushing at an early age — veterinarians are increasingly recommending this to owners of all breeds.

Yorkie Poo Haircuts

One of the adorable things about Yorkie Poos is that there is a lot of variety in ways to groom and trim their hair.

Some Yorkie Poos have more of a Yorkie coat with long, silky hair. Others have the Poodle’s curly coat or even something that’s somewhere in between.

Try an Internet search for Yorkie, Yorkie Poo, and Poodle cuts. You can get a lot of ideas from sites like Pinterest. A good groomer can also help you choose the best cut for your Yorkie Poo.

Whether you choose to try it yourself or to hire a groomer, here are some basic styles to consider:

The Puppy Cut

This is a cute style that works for both coat types. Your pup’s hair will be trimmed short (about ½ inch) all over his body. This is a popular cut because it’s easy to care for and the short length prevents matting.

The Teddy Bear Cut

This is similar to the puppy cut, but the hair around the face is cut to look round, like the face of a teddy bear. It’s longer than the puppy cut (about 2 inches). This cut is also easy to care for at home, but you will need to brush it more often than the puppy cut.

Curly Cuts

There are several types of curly cuts to choose from if your Yorkie Poo has a Poodle-type coat. You can have his hair cut close so the curls don’t mat, or have him cut into the classic Poodle poofs. You can even borrow ideas from other curly-coated breeds.

Straight Cuts

These work best on Yorkie Poos with the terrier-type coat. The schnauzer cut is a popular straight-coat style. The groomer will shave the back and sides of your Yorkie Poo and leave a “skirt” hanging from the underside. You can have the skirt as long or as short as you’d like. The hair on the face and head is left long. The face is trimmed closely and creates the classic Schnauzer mustache.

For general tips on how to trim a Yorkie Poo at home, check out our detailed tips to groom your Yorkie Poo.

Finding the Perfect Yorkie Poo Puppy

Are you ready to add a Yorkie Poo puppy to your family?

Before you begin looking for Yorkie Poos for sale, do your research. Are you interested in purchasing a Yorkie Poo puppy from a breeder or looking to adopt one from your local animal shelter or rescue organization?

Photo of a Brown Yorkie Poo Puppy | Yorkie Poo Temperament

With a purebred Yorkie Poo, you will know their complete health and temperament history.

You will not always know a dog’s history from a shelter or rescue. Keep that in mind when deciding between purchasing and adopting.

Yorkie Poo Breeders

When it comes to Yorkie Poo breeders, research is your best friend. Find a breeder who is responsible and knowledgeable about the breed.

Once you find several breeders that fit your criteria, schedule a visit and ask to see one of the Yorkie Poos parents. Ensure the house and kennels are clean and the dogs and puppies look happy.

A good Yorkie Poo breeder will genuinely care about their dogs and puppies.

They will even quiz you to determine if you will provide a good home and care for their Yorkie Poo.

How Do I Choose a Yorkie Poo Puppy?

This is an important question because the Yorkie-Poodle cross is still new. There is still a lot of individual difference among Yorkie Poos.

No Yorkie Poo will be an exact match with all of the temperament traits listed in this article.

And there’s a good chance that the puppies even within a single litter may all look different, depending on which genes each puppy inherited from each parent.

The best way to choose the right puppy for you is to visit the breeder several times, if possible, to get to know the looks and personalities of all of the pups. The breeder should also be able to tell you a lot about their temperaments from their own observations.

Yorkie Poo Rescue and Adoption

Are you interested in rescuing a Yorkie Poo instead of purchasing a puppy? While not as common as other breeds in rescues, Yorkie Poos for rescue do exist.

Do a quick search online for a local Yorkie Poo rescue. There are devoted Yorkie Poos rescues as well as local shelters and rescue groups that will have this breed available for adoption.

Keep in mind that you won’t always know the dog’s history – especially if they were found as a stray.

The rescue or shelter will provide initial medical care where they will test for major medical issues. But some medical or temperament issues may arise after you bring your rescue home.

How Much Does a Yorkie Poo Cost?

Interested in Yorkie Poo puppies for sale?

Purchasing a Yorkie Poo from a breeder can cost anywhere from $1200-$1500. The price depends on the location and availability of puppies.

The average cost of adopting a Yorkie Poo from a local shelter is around $250. The exact cost will depend on where you live and the shelter policy.

A Yorkie Poo’s price could be quite a bit more if you adopt from a rescue, depending on the location of the dog you want and if it needs to be shipped to you. But you have a better chance of finding a specific breed from a rescue organization than with local shelters.

Whichever you choose, the adoption fee often includes vaccinations, any necessary medical treatment, and spaying or neutering.

Teacup Yorkie Poos

If Yorkie Poos aren’t cute enough for you, there is a teacup Yorkie Poo. A tinier version of the mixed breed, the teacup Yorkie Poo is a mix between a miniature or toy Yorkshire Terrier and a toy Poodle.

The teacup has the same temperament and traits as the Yorkie Poodle; they’re just a smaller version. The term “teacup” is not a breed name. It’s just a marketing term used by sellers to describe the miniature Yorkie size.

If you’re considering a teacup Yorkie Poo, there a couple of things you should know. Teacup Yorkies and Yorkie Poos are tiny – and therefore very fragile – dogs. They would not be safe in a home with small children.

The mini Yorkie Poos also tend to have more serious health issues than the full-sized versions.

For these two reasons, many responsible breeders will not breed teacup Yorkies or Yorkie crosses. They may be hard to find, and they are usually very expensive.

Similar Breeds

Maybe you’ve researched your options for adopting a Yorkie Poo and you learned that it’s hard to find exactly what you’re looking for. Or maybe you’ve decided that the Yorkie Poo is close but not quite the right breed for you.  

Either way, there are hybrid mixes you may like to consider that combine the Yorkie or the Poodle with other breeds.

Other Yorkie Crosses

Because of its small size and overall adorability quotient, the Yorkie is a popular breed for “designer dog” combinations. There are literally dozens of them!

Here is just a sampling of Yorkie hybrids that you may be interested in. With a quick Internet search, you will find photos of these and many others.

Other Poodle Crosses

There are also many poodle mixes, maybe because the Poodle has a sweet disposition and makes a great family dog. And because Poodles come in three sizes, there is a lot of versatility to work with!

A Final Word About The Yorkie Poo Dog Temperament

The Yorkie Poo is a lively breed that’s easy to love. The Yorkie Poo personality is fun-loving and affectionate. With parent breeds that are both very people-oriented, it’s not surprising that the Yorkie Poo adores humans.

The Yorkie Poo temperament is also intelligent, loyal, and spunky. For families that would enjoy a dog that thrives on attention and social interaction, the Yorkie Poo may well be the ultimate companion dog.